Record numbers attend Birdfair at Rutland Water

Birdfair at Rutland Water.  John Ashton with son Harry, 12.'Photo: MSMP170813-007ow
Birdfair at Rutland Water. John Ashton with son Harry, 12.'Photo: MSMP170813-007ow
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A record number of people attended the world’s largest Birdfair and helped raise more than £250,000 for conservation.

The weekend’s British Birdfair at Rutland Water, which this year marked its 25th anniversary, got off to a wet start.

Birdfair co-founder Tim Appleton, from the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, said: “By the afternoon the sun was shining and it didn’t stop shining after that.

“We had record number of people attending. It was incredibly successful. Rutland can be very proud.”

The hundreds of exhibitors came from as far afield as Australia, China and countries in Africa. And there were 160 lectures given by bird experts and celebrities.

Many of the events were geared towards children with the aim of educating and engaging the many youngsters who attended with their parents.

“There were many highlights,” said Mr Appleton.

“One of them is the 250 volunteers who gave up their time to help. Another was the evening’s massive 25th birthday party which was attended by some 500 people including many celebrities.”

Among the famous names at the event were television presenter and wildlife documentaries cameraman Simon King and broadcaster and conservationist Bill Oddie.